P. Michiel Westenberg

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The relation between brain development across adolescence and adolescent risky behavior has attracted increasing interest in recent years. It has been proposed that adolescents are hypersensitive to reward because of an imbalance in the developmental pattern followed by the striatum and prefrontal cortex. To date, it is unclear if adolescents engage in(More)
Recent models hypothesize that adolescents' risky behavior is the consequence of increased sensitivity to rewards in the ventral medial (VM) prefrontal cortex (PFC) and the ventral striatum (VS), paired with immature cognitive control abilities due to slow maturation of the dorsal anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) and lateral PFC. We tested this hypothesis(More)
Decision making, or the process of choosing between competing courses of actions, is highly sensitive to age-related change, showing development throughout adolescence. In this study, we tested whether the development of decision making under risk is related to changes in risk-estimation abilities. Participants (N = 93) between ages 8-30 performed a child(More)
Interpretation bias, described as the tendency to interpret social situations in a negative or threatening manner, has been widely linked to social anxiety in adult populations. This study aimed to extend research on interpretation bias to an adolescent population. Thirty-seven high socially anxious and a control group of 36 non-socially anxious adolescents(More)
This study describes a new public speaking protocol for youth. The main question asked whether a speech prepared at home and given in front of a pre-recorded audience creates a condition of social-evaluative threat. Findings showed that, on average, this task elicits a moderate stress response in a community sample of 83 12- to 15-year-old adolescents.(More)
Feedback processing is crucial for successful performance adjustment following changing task demands. The present event-related fMRI study was aimed at investigating the developmental differences in brain regions associated with different aspects of feedback processing. Children age 8-11, adolescents age 14-15, and adults age 18-24 performed a rule switch(More)
This study focused on the relation between adolescents' social anxiety and the way they are treated by classmates. The link between class behavior during oral presentations and the social anxiety of the speakers was investigated. Social anxiety was measured both as a trait variable and as manifest in two state anxiety characteristics. A group of 55 students(More)
The relation between individual differences in personality and differences in developmental maturity was studied by relating observations of personality by multiple, independent judges to level of ego development. The personality characteristics of longitudinally followed Ss (104 at age 14; 98 at age 23) were evaluated by the California Adult Q-Set (CAQ);(More)
The psychometric properties of the Buss and Plomin (1984) EAS Temperament Survey for Children (Parental Ratings) were examined in a sample of Dutch children between 4 and 13 years of age. Ratings were obtained from 230 mothers and 172 fathers. The findings presented here provide the lacking cross-validation of the original analyses by Rowe and Plomin(More)
We review studies that investigate negative social cognitions of socially anxious youth in relation to two specific domains: interpretation of ambiguous social situations and self-evaluation of social performance, including social skills and nervous behaviors. In this review, we address the question whether socially anxious youth's negative perceptions are(More)